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Grounding Reloading Press

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by Jack Frost, Aug 18, 2010.

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  1. Jack Frost

    Jack Frost TS Member

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    I have noticed a few threads about grounding reloading presses to cancel static electricity charge for more accurate powder drops. How are some of you grounding your presses? My press is mounted on a solid wood reloading bench, and there is a metal box with 4 plugs 4x4 next to the bench. Would I want to attach a wire to one of the mounting bolts at the base of the machine and connect the wire to the meta box (box should be grounded)or ground the press to the wooden bench (does not make sense)? The other option I have is copper water pipe overhead. Should I attach the ground wire as close to the top of the press as possible or just anyplace metal on the press is fine? Thank you for you input.

    J.F.
     
  2. phirel

    phirel TS Member

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    Jack- You could ground the metal parts safely to the copper pipe and a bit less safely to the metal box in your outlet or even the screws holding on the plastic cover to the box. Touching the copper pipe and the loader at the same time will also discharge the press. The problem is that you cannot ground the plastic bottle that holds the powder and this is the area where static charge can affect powder drops. Grounding can discharge the powder bushings and this may help a little. A very thin wire (telephone wire) is adequate.

    Adding humidity to the air around the press will inhibit static potentials.

    Pat Ireland
     
  3. Jack Frost

    Jack Frost TS Member

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    Pat- Thank you for clarifying this for me. The metal box with the plugs also has a metal cover (industrial type. I could then attach the wire from my press to the screw that holds the cover on the box or the water pipe. I may try a dryer sheet around the powder bottle also. Thank you again.

    J.F.
     
  4. Basfshmn

    Basfshmn Member

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    Jack, ya might want to check if the metal box is actually grounded. Just because it is metal doesn't mean that it is grounded. Same with copper water line. Rick
     
  5. Jack Frost

    Jack Frost TS Member

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    Rick- Verry good point, will veriy both. Thank you.

    J.F.
     
  6. Auctioneer

    Auctioneer Well-Known Member

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    Your electric outlet has a screw in the middle of the plate. That is also a grounding point. Put your copper wire around that screw and then to your reloader. Water pipe is good, your phone line ground wire is also a good point.
     
  7. halfmile

    halfmile Well-Known Member

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    Don't waste your time. If you have inconsistent drops and you have powder clinging to the inside of the bottles, put a strip of dryer anti static sheet in, hold it with the little red cap.

    HM
     
  8. Psycho

    Psycho TS Member

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    Pat could explane why the plastic bottle is not grounded?
     
  9. Quack Shot

    Quack Shot Active Member

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    Grounding the press is usually a waste of time, but if you MUST, be sure to add a 1 Meg Ohm 1 Watt (or even 1/2 Watt) resistor in series. Almost ALL ESD grounding devices have them and it is a safety issue. It acts as a current limiting device while not affecting the ability of electrons to flow to ground. If you had your press "grounded" to something other than a real ground, the resistor could keep you from getting a bad shock.

    Personally, I have a humidifier that does the trick in low humidity conditions in the Winter.
     
  10. phirel

    phirel TS Member

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    The plastic powder bottle is not a conductor. Static electricity is an electrical potential that has built up on something. To get rid of it, the potential must flow to the ground. The electricity cannot flow through a non conductor such as a plastic bottle.

    I am referring only to the very small potentials we find round the home. I also realize that the term poor conductor is better than non conductor and if the potential is very high, it will pass through a poor conductor (lighting will pass through air).

    I contend the resistors mentioned by Quack Shot are a bad idea. They will prevent you from a little tingle if there is a problem with your wiring. I would rather get a little shock from my press than have my wife get a little shock from the toaster. If I get shocked, I will jump, say a strong word or two and then look for the problem. If my wife gets shocked from the toaster, both me and the toaster are in big trouble.

    Pat Ireland
     
  11. Unknown1

    Unknown1 Well-Known Member

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    Dryer sheets will make some of your powder smell nice but that's all.

    Dryer sheets do what they do by getting hot in a dryer and depositing a thin film of wax on the fabrics being dried. The wax reduces the friction between the cloth fibers and THAT reduces the production of a static charge. Since powder isn't being agitated in the loader and the wax isn't being heated and distributed, the sheet does absolutely nothing.

    M
     
  12. halfmile

    halfmile Well-Known Member

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    wiki sez:

    "Fabric softeners work by coating the surface of the cloth fibers with a thin layer of chemicals; these chemicals have lubricant properties and are electrically conductive, thus making the fibers feel smoother and preventing buildup of static electricity. Other functions are improvements of iron glide during ironing, increased resistance to stains, and reduction of wrinkling and pilling.

    Cationic softeners bind by electrostatic attraction to the negatively charged groups on the surface of the fibers and neutralize their charge; the long aliphatic chains are then oriented towards the outside of the fiber, imparting lubricity. Vinegar works on some materials in a similar way, as the hydrogen ions bind to the anionic groups on the fibers."


    All I know is it stopped the powder from sticking to the bottle, but I never did have a problem with consistency of powder drops.

    Box has no reference to wax on it. Also bottles don't seem to do that any more.

    HM
     
  13. jbbor

    jbbor Active Member

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    I'm sorry Pat but your wrong. The current limiting resistor Quack Shot refers to limits "current" but not electron flow. Current is what kills. Me, I wouldn't mess with it. Uniformed persons can make a bigger potential for disaster by listening to other uninformed persons on a public board. Jimmy Borum
     
  14. phirel

    phirel TS Member

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    Jimmy - I know of your electrical background and I concede to your knowledge. I an confused on the difference between electron flow and current.

    Pat Ireland
     
  15. short shucker

    short shucker TS Member

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    To get rid of a little static in the bottles, roll around a little graphited shot inside of the powder bottle. This will eliviate the static that has built up. Then dump the shot back into shot bottle.

    To get rid of the rest of the static, just humidify your reloading area above 35% rh.

    Grounding your reloader is just a myth. It doesn't do diddly squat. You can also prevent static build-up in hulls by storing them inside cardboard or cotton based fabric instead of plastic tubs.

    ss
     
  16. Buster 25

    Buster 25 Member

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    I found that a can of Anti-static spray my wife use's too keep her clothing from clinging works very well.
    I just shoot a few shot's of the stuff around my Powder Bottle and top of the press before each loading session, I no longer have the static cling problem with powder.
     
  17. gdbabin

    gdbabin TS Member

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    Ohm's law tells us I=E/R


    An increase in resistance (R) decreases the current (I) if the voltage (E) remains constant.


    All the anti-stat mats we use in the industry incorporate a limiting resistor just as Carl states. This is for safety as current is the killer like Jimmy posted. Resistors limit current as indicated by the mathematics of Ohm's Law.




    Voltage is the unit of measure of a difference of potential--an electromotive force (EMF).


    In a simple closed series DC circuit incorporating a battery a conductor is attached to each end of the battery and provides the path for the current (electrons) produced by the EMF to return to the source forming a loop.


    An insulator (poor conductor) can and will store a static charge and is commonly produced by friction. This static charge is also a difference of potential (EMF). The charge will remain relatively constant until provided a discharge path. If the EMF becomes strong enough, the charge can "jump", even a non conducting (insulating) barrier, i.e. lightning, spark plug gap, gas grill starter, etc.


    A good correlation is the Hoover Dam. The force of the water in the lake is the static charge. The dam serves as the insulator (non conductor) mechanically producing a difference of potential between the forces of the retained lake and the flowing river below. This balance (difference of potential) is tightly controlled by the structural design and operation of the dam's flood gates. Provide a significant change in the difference of potential, like a mega flood that breaches the top of the dam, and you get the equalizing discharge--as nature abhors a vacuum and is always seeking to normalize difference of potentials.


    Differences of potentials provide energy to produce work; or calamity, if not understood or properly controlled.


    My reloaders are not permanently grounded. Also, I haven't had any trouble with powder cling. Sometimes in the winter I do have problems with my trousers clinging to my leg.




    Guy Babin
     
  18. skeeljc

    skeeljc Supporting Vendor Supporting Vendor

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    Forget the wires!!

    If you cannot raise the relative humidity to near 50% (Winter months) then rinse your powder bottle in a solution of dist soap and water and let it dry without rinsing. The coating of dish detergent will allow the static build up to folw from the plastic bottle to the metal press.

    A humidifier is a great addition to your reloading room. It will make you feel warmer in the Winter months. I add about a gallon of water per day to my 24 x 32 shop in the Winter months.

    Jim Skeel
     
  19. Unknown1

    Unknown1 Well-Known Member

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    <blockquote><I>"Box has no reference to wax on it. Also bottles don't seem to do that any more."</I></blockquote>

    There are many kinds of waxes, even if they're synthetic. The chemical compounds on dryer sheets behave in ways similar to waxes. If you were a woman who had small kids who ground their wax crayons into the rugs and into their clothes, would you buy softener sheets if you knew they were going to coat your clean clothes with more wax?

    Do you eat apples, cucumbers, zucchini and other fruits/vegetables? They are also coated with an edible wax if they aren't locally produced and must be stored for extended periods or transported for sale.

    Wax isn't only for candles anymore!

    MK
     
  20. Quack Shot

    Quack Shot Active Member

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    Pat Ireland,

    If you know better, you'd better hurry up and tell the people that manufacture the commercial ESD grounding devices the electronics and computer industries use. They somehow have the idea that the resistor is mandatory for such devices and somehow include them in the design when they manufacture them. I'd sure like to know what effect a remote current limiting resistor somewhere else in the home, would have on your wife's toaster in order for her to get a shock from it.

    As far as plastic not being able to conduct electricity, it may not conduct well, but it sure can "collect" free electrons (Static). If it can collect/store static, it can also discharge static. All that is required is contact, or close proximity, with a more positively charged object.
     
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